Merriam-Webster Names Dictionary's Word of the Year

tarrah-gibbons
December 10, 2019 - 9:35 am
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Every year the famous Merriam-Webster dictionary is notoriously known for sharing its word of the year.

The nonbinary pronoun “they” has been named 2019’s word of the year, according to Merriam-Webster.

The dictionary revealed that searches for the term have risen by 313% in the last year. Back in September, the Merriam-Webster added the nonbinary pronoun as an entry in its dictionary.

It was announced that the word could also be used to reference a single person whose gender identity is nonbinary along with three other separate definitions.

Merriam-Webster released a statement and said that the word of the year was determined by data.

“English famously lacks a gender-neutral singular pronoun to correspond neatly with singular pronouns like everyone or someone, and as a consequence "they" has been used for this purpose for over 600 years,” Merriam-Webster said in a statement.

The dictionary also pointed out that the term was prominent in the news throughout 2019.

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal revealed in April during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on the Equality Act that her child is gender-nonconforming and uses "they."

Another celebrity the dictionary was Sam Smith. The singer announced in September that they now use "they" and "them."

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